Self-medicating not allowed

10 May

9:25 pm

Sorry I’ve been MIA this week.

The past few days have been really shitty, I must say. And, I just haven’t felt like writing about it. However, I wanted to check in and say howdy-do, I’m here, and I’m sober. Coming up on 8 weeks again next Monday. 🙂

I don’t know if I’ve been sad, sick, drinking too much Diet Coke, or inhaling too much second-hand smoke. Whatever it is, I’ve just had a headache. Of the body (my head does feel grainy) and mind (I feel sort of hopeless in the most literal sense, as in, nothing to personally look forward to).

In having to just sit with it, wait it out; I guess I’ve figured out why I used to drink wine when I felt this way: I don’t like being sad. I don’t have TIME for it. I’m also familiar with it, and so afraid of the place it takes me (is taking me) and afraid that I’ll think myself further down. My father has been in the midst of a serious, clinical depression going on 5 years or more. I used to wonder, why can’t he just think himself out of it? Honestly, the hardest thing about the past few days has been NOT ALLOWING my mind to think itself further into the “depression,” or whatever we’re calling it. Which actually frightened me a bit, because it felt like I could, if I wasn’t careful to control the negative thoughts.

Anyway, I’ve learned a lot from the past week. One, I can no longer escape from this, or run from it, with wine. I did that for years, and it’s just not possible anymore IF I want to actually move past it. (This is going to be REALLY hard, I know. It’s why this is such a mental thing for me, a mental battle.) Two, I want to drink LESS than I want to stay sober, which means slogging through the mind-fogs like this. I know these may simply be mood swings, but they could also be NECESSARY growing pains–learning how to deal, unmedicated, with the ups and downs of life. (Though, is this really a “normal” down for most people? These feelings are gut-wrenching, mind-numbing, seemingly pointless; I’m not as much “sad” as I feel totally out of it, lethargic, reflective on past mistakes to the point of feeling the weight of the world on my shoulders. As I told my boyfriend, it’s not even that I WANT to do something, it’s that I want to WANT to do something.)

But, today is better than yesterday is better than the early days of the week. I think I need a new routine, a new project, some meaty changes to bite into…which I’m working on. I did accomplish a few things this week (another editing project; a visit to a nonprofit–a few weeks longer than it “should’ve” taken me, but oh, well, it takes what it takes; a couple of important trips planned, one to a neighboring island for a few days next month–yes, I DO have my priorities straight). I already forgot about most of the negative thoughts that were clouding my mind (there were so many, and they were so confusing, that it was hard to even think them let alone hold onto them), which is exactly where they belong–outside my memory bank, in the ether. And, that thing I mentioned above, which I realized somewhere along the way in my email-reading and comment-writing: I want to be sober MORE than I want to drink; which, in essence, cancels out even the most painful cravings. (As an aside, considering that drinking the other night would have made me feel the same as I already felt–numb, sad, closed off to the world–well, it’s a no-brainer.)

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4 Responses to “Self-medicating not allowed”

  1. Lisa Neumann May 11, 2013 at 3:03 pm #

    despite all the pain (or maybe in lieu of it) you are a most excellent communicator … I feel you … and I am personally happy to see your name show up in my inbox with [New Post] attached… xox

  2. Amy May 12, 2013 at 12:05 am #

    I’ve been on the roller coaster lately too.

    Have you ever seen this: http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.com/

    Funny and kind of timely.

    I want to be sober more than I want to drink- immensely. I’d like some quiet around here some days though. That’s what the black outs were for, huh? Now….still at the drawing board. On my run today I was trying for that meditative state and ended up having to stop and tell myself to be quiet, and then count my steps and breaths so I would just stop thinking for a dang minute! Sheesh! 🙂

  3. Sibyl May 12, 2013 at 5:26 am #

    Hey drunky drunk girl, thanks for putting it out there. You reminded me about how hard it is to hold on to a commitment not to drink, especially in the early days of sobriety. I really appreciate how you shared your feelings, and you write your experience so well. It is very true that having that drink will not make it better … it might numb you for a while, but those feelings are still there, just waiting to smack you over the head again. So carry on living in the moment – sober – and accept that there will be ups and downs. It will get better, so hang in there!

  4. Just Some Woman May 13, 2013 at 4:10 pm #

    Hey DDG: You certainly aren’t alone. Sometimes those feelings aren’t just from not drinking. In my case, I firmly believe I have a chemical imbalance. No, I’m not bi-polar, horribly depressed or just plain crazy. HOWEVER there is a little “something” that is off balance. I take an anti-depressant and have for years. I can’t even tell I’m on it. But if I go off of it I damn sure can. It might not be for you, but something worth thinking about.
    Don’t worry, everything will be ok if you don’t drink. You’ve said a million times that it could only make it worse and you’re right!

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